Aero, Light or Endurance Road bike types in comparison

road bike

The great asset- Aero, Light or Endurance Road bike types in comparison

Anyone who wants to buy a racing best bike us is faced with the task of knowing exactly which routes he would like to drive with it. For a racing road bike is no longer just today, but was usually developed for a specific purpose. There are racing bikes for sprinters, for climbers, for time cyclists, for comfort lovers, for touring enthusiasts and many other types.

Of course, they can also climb the mountains with a touring road bike, but not as fast and as good as with a particularly light and stiff road bike, which was designed for this purpose. In this blog entry, we explain the differences between the three most popular road bike types Aero Bike, Endurance Road Bike and the “classic”, ultralight road bike.

To better understand the differences, we compared the three popular Trek model ranges Domane, Madone, and Emonda in the 2018 versions.


Aero Bike – Trek Madone 9.2 2017

Suitable for: Race, Criterion, a short triathlon
features: Aggressive geometry, aero frame, high rim profile
drawbacks: speed before comfort, weight, problems with crosswinds

Aggressive frame geometry

The main focus of the aero road bike is on reducing air resistance while driving. Therefore, the head tube is shorter so that the rider sits as flat and aerodynamic as possible on the bike to best bike us. Compared to the more comfortable seating position of an Endurance racing bike with 160mm, the head tube length of an Aero Bikes is approx. 140mm. Furthermore, the reach is longer. It describes the distance between the axles of the bottom bracket to the head tube and is an important indicator of the intended use of a racing bike. For example, the Trek Madone 9.2 has a 39.5cm reach, while the Endurance Bike Domane only measures 37.7cm on the ruler. On the Aero Bike, the rider has to stretch more and take on a more aggressive, streamlined position on the bike.

At this point, it should be briefly noted that there is a difference between the reach of the driver’s frame and the driver’s reach. The latter can be adjusted individually as it measures the distance between the saddle tip and the handlebars and can, therefore, be changed by adjusting the saddle setback or a longer stem. Although an Endurance road bike can achieve a more aggressive geometry than the Aero bike, the more you move away from the intended starting geometry, the less performance you can expect.

The disadvantage of the stretched seating position on the Aero road bike shows up after several hours in the saddle. Many drivers lack the flexibility to sustain this attitude for a long time. Either you force it too much or risk injury, or you relax the position and then lose the Aero advantage.


Aerodynamics and system integration

The eye-catching profile of Aero Bikes is characterized by the thick and long frame tubes, which are often pointed or tapered at the ends. The frame is also rectangular in shape and impresses with an extremely straight top tube. Classic road bikes and endurance best bike us usually have a slight bow at this point to ensure additional flexibility of the frame. The aero bike thus has a small distance between the interface between the upper tube/seat tube and the end of the seat tube and thus generates more rigidity.

Of course, the thick tubes need more material and usually make Aero road bike heavier than traditional road bikes, even though they share the same geometry and components.

System integration is the key to a good aero road bike. Especially the brakes are cleverly hidden on most bikes, for example, just behind the bottom bracket or like the Trek Madone by the Vector Wings, which integrate seamlessly with the recess of the fork, the front brake in the frame. Cables and cables are hidden in the frame as standard and routed through recesses. The last part of the Aero-Puzzle is the high rim profiles, which provide better aerodynamics. The height of the rims is at least 40mm and sometimes goes up to 80mm. The disadvantage here is clearly the higher weight and susceptibility to side winds.


Bigger ratio

Of course, this is not exclusive to Aero Bikes, but the trend is visible. Aero road bikes should be the best bike us fast, and therefore need a larger gear ratio for even higher speeds. Classic racing bikes have long relied on a large 53-tooth chainring and a small 39-tooth on the crank, but the current trend is increasingly turning into a ‘mid-compact’ crank with 52 and 36 teeth or a ‘compact’ crank. Crank with 50 and 34 teeth go. Aero Bikes hold on to the 53/39 combination, as they can play their advantages, especially in the large aisles. An 11-25 cassette rear allows smooth shifting.


Aero Bikes on Best Bike us

The ultra-light road bike – Trek Emonda SLR 6

Suitable for: Allrounder and climber
Features: very light, very versatile
Cons: no pronounced weaknesses, not as fast as Aero and not as comfortable as Endurance

Frame and weight

As the name suggests, the classic road bike puts its focus clearly on the weight. Less is more, very clear. This is also clear in our comparison field. The Trek 2017 bikes all have the same specifications, but the difference in weight is striking. The Emonda brings it to just 6.5 kilograms; the Madone weighs 7.6 kg and the Endurance racer Domane proud 8.2 kilos. So almost 2 kilograms difference between the Domane and the Emonda, despite the same frame size and identical components. The biggest rash here is the frame, which weighs only 690 grams on the new 2017 Emonda SLR 6. The top model SLR 10 with a total weight of 4.6 kilograms shows that even more can be done with high-end components.



As already mentioned, the “Lightweight” bike falls between the Aero Road Bike and the Endurance Bike when it comes to performance and comfort to best bike us. This usually makes it the first choice of top riders like Froome and Quintana at the Tour de France. The road bikes are not quite as stiff as aero bikes, have a more direct handling than endurance bikes and are extremely agile thanks to the low weight. The brakes are not as powerful as an Endurance bike with disc brakes, but more effective than Aero wheels, whose brakes have to compromise on aerodynamics.

The frame is characterized by thin tubes that keep the weight low, provide flexibility and yet provide the highest level of rigidity and durability. To find this balance is the supreme discipline in frame construction. An optimal weight/stiffness ratio is often achieved by a particularly stiff bottom bracket, seat tubes, control tubes and chainstays with different carbon types.

Nevertheless, the classic road bikes do not reach the stiffness of an aero bike. The weight advantage is significant and makes the light racers on the mountain unbeatable.


Frame geometry

The geometry depends heavily on the manufacturer. If a brand has a strong assortment of Aero, Endurance and Light Road Bikes, they may brew more aggressive frames as they have a more relaxed version of the Endurance Road Bike. As an all-rounder of the three types, the classic road bike in the frame shape can thus vary quite a bit – in any case, more than the other types.

In Trek, despite the Domane as a model long-distance road bike, a more comfortable version (H2) of the Emonda and a pure race version (H1). The frames differ as follows:

Steering Ear: 14cm / 17cm = H2 + 3cm
Wheelbase: 98.3cm / 98.3cm = no difference
Reach: 39.5cm / 38.7cm = H2 -0.8cm
Stack: 54.9cm / 57.7cm = H2 + 2.8cm


Classic racing bikes on Best Bike us

Endurance Bike – Trek Domane SLR 6 Disc

Suitable for: long-distance riders, poorer roads, racing cyclists without race ambitions.
Features: Comfortable, upright seating position, high stability.
Disadvantages: Relatively heavy, less agile handling

Comfort and stability

The key features of an Endurance road bike are comfort, durability, and stability long distance cycling. They were originally developed for the cobblestones of the “Classics” in northern France – demanding day-to-day races with the most difficult road conditions. The road bike was designed to dampen the vibrations of the ground, which otherwise led to faster fatigue of the driver. That’s why the frames were built with greater flexibility and flexibility, and larger tires were used.

This flexibility is achieved and named differently by each manufacturer. At Trek, the system is called Issued, a front-and-rear articulation mechanism that increases vertical compliance (bottom thrusts) without sacrificing rigidity. For the larger tires, manufacturer-spanning is put on a wider tire clearance at the fork and the rear frame triangle. Wider tires have many advantages such as being able to run the best bike us with less air pressure to absorb even more vibration and lower rolling resistance. Most Endurance bikes are 28mm tires that Trek Domane came in our comparison with standard 32mm.


Frame geometry

Especially in comparison with the Aero Bike Madone, it becomes clear: Endurance road bikes bring the driver in a rather upright seating position. The control tube is higher, the wheelbase longer, the reach less and the stack extended.

Steering tube: 14cm / 17.5cm = Domane with + 3.5cm
Wheelbase: 98.3cm / 100.8cm = Domane with + 2.5cm
Reach: 39.5cm / 37.7cm = Madone with + 1.8cm
Stack: 54.5cm / 59.1cm = Domane with +4.6 cm


These frame dimensions make for a far less aggressive position on the bike, allowing for longer distances without too much strain on the back or shoulders. Of course, the more upright position makes the endurance bike more susceptible to air resistance head-on, but in the long run comfort and speed can be equated, as the rider can achieve higher horsepower over a longer period of time.

Stability is ensured by the thicker tires, wider handlebars, and longer wheelbase. The focus of the bike is thus increased. The steering angle is relatively flat at 71.3 ° at the Domane compared to the 73 ° of a Trek Emonda or Madone. This leads to a slightly sluggish and thus easier handling and a less agile driving style.


On the long haul

Endurance Bikes really means nothing more than a long-distance road bike. In addition to the higher compliance and the pleasant geometry, there are other features that distinguish the bikes.

This includes, among other things, the use of a “Compact” -setup on the crank, ie fewer teeth and smaller ratio for steep climbs and tired legs at the end of a long road bike tag. The rear cassette usually contains 11-28 or 11-32 pinion. Another trend is the use of disc brakes on endurance bikes. They were the first to put more on disc variations, and with good reason. The disc brake is superior to the rim brake in many respects, especially with regard to the braking force in the event of moisture. Only the weight you have to make currently still cuts.

Our recommendation

If you cannot decide between the three types, we recommend the Endurance road bike for best bike us now. Comfort and longevity are an important focus for most cyclists, and those who do not intend to compete ambitiously in the foreseeable future will get the perfect overall package. However, those who have had enough of the Feierabendrunde and finally want to present themselves on the racetrack must decide: If the mountains are your thing and you like to accelerate even on poorer roads, you should grab the classic road bike. However, if you live in the lowlands and the races in the area take place on the finest asphalt, the Aero Bike is the better choice. The best option, however, is number 4 – just get a road bike of every type.

We hope that we could help those with this blog entry. Now you can browse Bike Border for racing bikes from over 100 brands or search for a Best bike shop near you. If you need more decision support or are at the beginning of your road bike search, read our Best Road Bike Guide for more information.

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